Being Transported

Psalm 1:2-3

but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
    whatever they do prospers.

This summer we transplanted several plants including 2 trees to make a small Japanese garden. The trees were very healthy. One had a fairly large root ball while the other had a rather small root ball. We were so excited about this garden and how it would remind us of Japan where we had lived and served for 35 years.

It was a very dry Summer, so we tried to water on a regular basis – not too much – not too little. One tree dropped most of its leaves and the other seemed to do better. Hopefully both will make it through the Winter and be covered with new growth in the Spring.

We too have been transplanted from Japan back to America. For us too it has been a dry season. Not so hard that we have lost faith but dry enough to show us where we have relied on ourselves or circumstances. We are learning to pray and trust God in new ways with a deepening faith and reliance on His mercy and grace. It has not always been easy or enjoyable, but God’s Holy Spirit is with us each struggling step. We know His presence and choose His joy.

Psalm 1:3 has been my life verse for most of my Christian life. This is what I want – to be a tree planted by streams of water, bearing fruit, not withering but prospering in God’s grace. Does my present struggle mean I am transplanted to the wrong place or at the wrong time? I don’t think so. God led us here and His timing was very clear. Does it mean my faith is weak? While my faith is not where I would like it to be, I know that I am in my Father’s hands, and He will grow this tree He has planted. Does it mean that God has abandoned me? Absolutely NOT! He says He will never leave me nor forsake me. He is causing my “roots” (faith) to go deeper in the Gospel. I will come through this with a fresher and more vibrant faith to serve God in new ways. AMEN.

Prayer: Father, I am so thankful that I am Yours and You will continue to produce Christ in me. I admit that I like to depend on myself, my strength, my abilities, and my ideas but I ask that You teach me to lean on Your mighty strength, Your universe creating abilities, and Your all knowing ideas. Let my “roots” of faith will draw life giving water from your streams so that I do not wither but will produce fruit.

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